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Abyssinian

Origin & colors

Origin country is Ethiopia. Abyssinian kittens are born with dark coats that gradually lighten as they mature, usually over several months. The adult coat should not be excessively short and is ideally fine, dense and close-lying, silky to the touch. The ticked or agouti effect that is the trademark of the breed—genetically a variant of the tabby pattern—should be uniform over the body, although the ridge of the spine and tail, back of the hind legs and the pads of the paws are always noticeably darker. Each hair has a light base with three or four bands of additional color growing darker towards the tip. The base color should be as clear as possible; any extensive intermingling with grey is considered a serious fault. A tendency to white on the chin is common but likewise must be minimal. The typical tabby M-shaped marking is often found on the forehead.

The breed’s original color standard is a warm deep reddish-brown base with black ticking.

Size

The Abyssinian is a slender, fine-boned, medium-sized cat. The head is moderately wedge-shaped, with a slight break at the muzzle, and nose and chin ideally forming a straight vertical line when viewed in profile. They have alert, relatively large pointed ears. The eyes are almond-shaped and are gold, green, hazel or copper depending on coat color. The legs tend to be long in proportion to a graceful body, with small oval paws; the tail is likewise long and tapering.

Personality

Abyssinians are a popular breed thanks in large part to their unusual intelligence and generally extroverted, playful, willful personalities. They are said to become depressed without constant activity and the attention of their owners. With their interest in playing with their owners combined with their curious intelligence, Abyssinians are known as the “Clowns of the Cat Kingdom”. They have an active, outgoing nature, yet tend to be quiet cats. They have soft chirrup-like vocalizations which do not sound like the expected “meow”. They are affectionate and friendly toward people.

Shedding

Brush this low-maintenance breed once per week or more if possible. This will be especially helpful during the shedding season.

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